Salute Philly sports stars, get crafty, or have a few laughs

Myriad offerings await this weekend, including a ceremony honoring some of Philly’s most popular sports figures; a theatrical performance festival; the superstars of of ink.

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Chris Robinson with Chris Robinson Brotherhood performs at Center Stage on Wednesday, Oct. 29, 2014, in Atlanta. (Photo by Katie Darby/Invision/AP)

Chris Robinson with Chris Robinson Brotherhood performs at Center Stage on Wednesday, Oct. 29, 2014, in Atlanta. (Photo by Katie Darby/Invision/AP)

Myriad eclectic offerings await this weekend, including a ceremony honoring some of Philly’s most popular sports figures; a theatrical performance festival; the superstars of ink; and a gathering of crafters.

Third annual Bridge PHL Theatre Festival
The Rotunda, 4014 Walnut St., Philadelphia
Nov. 1, 7:30 p.m.; Nov. 2, 7:30 p.m.; Nov. 3-4, 2 and 7:30 p.m.
Tickets: $15-$40

West Philadelphia is not just where The Fresh Prince, better known these days as movie star Will Smith, was born and raised. It’s home to a diverse group of arts and social justice organizations. One of them, The Bridge PHL, will be hosting its annual Theatre Festival this weekend. Poets, actors and writers will perform 16 short pieces on topics ranging from domestic violence to white privilege to racism.


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CraftNow Craft Month
“First Friday” and other events
Various venues

Contemporary Craft Show
Pennsylvania Convention Center, Exhibit Hall F, 12th and Arch streets, Philadelphia
Nov. 2, 11 a.m.-9 p.m.; Nov. 3, 10 a.m.-6 p.m.; Nov. 4, 10 a.m.-5 p.m.
Admission: $20 – $25

Craftsmen and craftswomen or “makers” are converging on Philadelphia this month to showcase their work, first at the Philadelphia Contemporary Craft Show, then at various craft-friendly events around the city. Philadelphia is a hub for the community of makers with its support for crafts in many different disciplines. One of the month’s signature events, the annual craft symposium, “Making A Difference,” takes place Friday from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m.

Chris Robinson Brotherhood
Ardmore Music Hall, 23 E. Lancaster Ave., Ardmore
Nov. 2-3, 8 p.m.
Tickets: $35-$55

Chris Robinson, the former frontman of the Black Crowes (and former husband of actress Kate Hudson) has a prolific new band, the Chris Robinson Brotherhood. It’s the same brand of bluesy, soulful Southern rock’n’roll he played with the Crowes.  With its aesthetic sensibilities and searing live performances, the band formed in 2011 may bring to mind the glory days of the Grateful Dead. Look for its latest release, “Betty’s Midwestern Magick Blends,” Nov. 19.

Art For Life Philadelphia Inaugural Event
Painted Bride Art Center, 230 Vine St., Philadelphia
Nov. 3, 6 p.m.
Tickets: $150 and up

Artist Danny Simmons, brother of Joseph “Rev. Run” Simmons and hip-hop mogul Russell Simmons, is hosting this benefit for his Rush Arts Philly organization that supports young local and emerging artists. The co-founder with Russell of “Def Poetry Jam,” the HBO series that showcased young poets, Danny is an abstract expressionist painter. He set up shop in Philly in 2015 and has been part of the arts community ever since. This year’s event honors Jane Golden, executive director of Philadelphia’s MuralArts program; artist and art activist Judy Brodsky; and artist James Brantley. Danny’s reality show star nieces, Angela and Vanessa Simmons, are scheduled to co-host, along with Lenny Bazemore.

Affion Crockett
Punchline Comedy Club, 33 E. Laurel St., Philadelphia
Nov. 1, 8 p.m.; Nov.2, 7:30 and 9:45 p.m.; Nov. 3; 7:30, 9:45 p.m.
Tickets: $23 -$28

Actor/comedian Affion Crockett started out as a dancer, but he has evolved as a comedian, writer and music producer. From his scene-stealing roles in “Baggage Claim” and other movies to his turns on the popular Nick Cannon MTV show “Wild ‘n Out,” Crockett has crafted a repertoire of skills. But he’s best known for his celebrity impersonations of Jay-Z, Kanye West, Drake and Barack Obama, among others.

15th Annual Philadelphia Sports Hall Of Fame Induction Ceremony
SugarHouse Casino, 1001 Delaware Ave., Philadelphia
Nov. 1, 5:30 p.m.
Tickets: $50 and up

Some of the most popular athletes to hail from or play in Philadelphia are being inducted into the city’s sports Hall of Fame this year. Among the 16 honorees are 76ers superstar Allen Iverson, Philadelphia Eagles running back Brian Westbrook, Phillies pitcher Jamie Moyer, and former NFL player Billy “White Shoes” Johnson, a Marcus Hook native. Among the other athletes tapped for inclusion is Joanne Iverson, the first coach of women’s rowing at the University of Pennsylvania. The event is open to the public — but for a price, which goes from general admission to VIP.

Havana Nights – First Fridays
World Café Live, 3025 Walnut St., Philadelphia
Nov. 2, 8 p.m.

Havana Nights is part of the city’s First Fridays offerings as well as a feature of World Café Live’s monthly Cuban music and food showcase. Drinks and food specials are available and the Cuban band Conjunto provides the music.

Springside Chestnut Hill Academy’s Barbara Crawford Gallery
500 W. Willow Grove Ave., Philadelphia
Through Dec. 19, 8 a.m.-3 p.m., or by appointment: email

The Achromatic art installation is curated by artist Melissa Maddonni Harris, who is also a parent at the school. Featuring the work of 11 mostly local women who created artwork using an all-white theme. The 20 textile items on display highlight the use of fiber. Included is a bridal gown — and you can register your reaction to that garment by pinning a note on the dress. Hours are based on the school’s hours,  so call ahead — 215-247-4700 — to make sure the gallery is open.

Poor People’s TV Room
Delaware Art Museum
Route 9 Library and Innovation Center – Black Box Theater,
2301 Kentmere Parkway, Wilmington,
Nov. 5 and 7, 7 p.m.
Tickets: $20-$30

Nigerian artist Okwui Okpokwasili is a Bessie Award winner who based her multimedia dance work “Poor People’s TV Room” on two significant historical events in Nigeria.

In the Women’s War of 1929, Igbo women mounted a resistance against their British colonizers, leading to the deaths of over 50 women.  Then, in 2014, Muslim extremists Boko Haram kidnapped 276 school girls in Nigeria in 2014, and the “Bring Back Our Girls” movement was born.

Okpokwasili’s work centers on African women as part of the global movement of women’s resistance. The dance performance features partial nudity.

Harvest Festival in Phoenixville
Phoenixville, Pennsylvania
Various Locations
Nov. 1-4

This fall festival in and around downtown Phoenixville features the crafts, music and beers that are a staple of every fall festival — and a few events you might not find anywhere else. On Friday evening at 6:30, you can enjoy “The Lion King” in Reeves Park. Saturday morning, you can witness Phoenixville’s first bed race. Teams of five — four pushers and one rider — will race against other teams on decorated beds. Organizers compare it to a soap box derby with beds instead of cars. And a pet parade is set for Sunday from noon to 3 p.m.

Atlantic City Tattoo Expo
Bally’s Atlantic City Hotel and Casino, Boardwalk
Nov. 2, 5–11 p.m.; Nov. 3, 11 a.m.–11 p.m.; Nov. 4, 11 a.m.–6 p.m.
Tickets: $20-$50

In the 15 years since Atlantic City’s Tattoo Expo began, body art has emerged from the underground to the mainstream. Live entertainment, meet-and-greets and tattoo artists from around the world will celebrate the explosion of tattoo artistry as illustrated by the array of tattoo innovations – everything from 3D to soundwave ink. Reality stars from the popular “Black Ink” TV show as well as “Ink Master” contestants Sarah Miller and James Vaughn are scheduled to appear. With all these tattoo artists in town, you’d expect that you can also get inked on the spot. You can, but you’ll have to make an online reservation with an individual artist first.

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